This past saturday was round #2 of the Live Train Race (LTR) Cyclocross Series. This weekends event was held in Palisade, CO at Riverbend Park. The weather report for the weekend was 12-14 inches of snow depending where you you lived. I went to bed and it hadn’t started to snow yet. I hoped for snow as I love racing in the nasty stuff. I woke up to the sound of icy snow on my window. Things were looking good.
As we drove north the snow stopped but things were still wet. I wouldn’t get to race in the snow but there was plenty of mud. After last race’s mechanical issue with my chain I put a rear derailleur on my bike instead of the Paul Melvin in hopes of keeping the chain from jumping off the bottom pulley. This did work but from just doing one practice lap I realized I had a new issue. My front chain ring is about 4 years old and worn, and when I got some mud on it the chain skipped terribly. There was nothing I could do about it at the race so I just went with it.
The race started and got a better start than last week and found myself second once again and leading the Master’s. I took the overall lead after a few turns and went to work at holding it. Because of my skipping chain I dropped back to second in the muddy back section of the course. I managed to get the lead back but a new issue appeared. That issue was my seat bolt. It was loose and my seat ended up pointing up at a 45 degree angle. The announcer called it a “Prison Seat”. When he said this over the loud speakers I nearly fell off my bike laughing. I would ride the next 6-7 laps with my seat spinning on the post and ruining my prostate. I can’t tell you how uncomfortable riding like this was. My seating position was so long from the saddle being so low, that it stretched me to the point where I couldn’t hold the hoods but had to ride on the tops.
If the seat issue and chain ring wasn’t bad enough my Crank Brothers cleats were old and my feet kept pulling out of my pedals. Luckily for me I never hit my knees on the bars or stem. I “HTFU” as my friend Dr. Z would say and just keep working it. I managed to hold onto second place overall and first in the Masters. The overall winner only beat me by 10-15 seconds which burned, (not as much as my taint) as I feel I could have won the overall if I had my shit together. I have two weeks before the next race to figure it all out.
The race was really fun with a great course layout and I really enjoyed myself despite the many issues I had. I’m looking forward to the next race and hoping I can get my act together, so I have a chance at winning the overall.
Get out there!